Monday, June 8, 2009

Disabilities- Good fun to be had by all!

I admit that I'm a bit biased when it comes to people with disabilities, especially autism, but still, is it so wrong to not find the placement of disabilities in pop culture so offensive? Am I becoming a PC prude (hmm, not to be confused with Mac prudes...)?

Some recent annoyances:

Two and a Half Men- I like this show, even though it's very repetitive plot lines are predictable. However, although the womanizing, depiction of alcoholics as funny (and maybe to be envied), bimbo stereotypes, and "flaming" gay men pass under my PC radar (again, there's the lack of personal link to the slandered groups...), the "slow" and "retard" jokes really strike a nerve. There was a recent rerun titled, "Love isn't blind, it's retarded..." I'd like to clarify that I don't find the jokes at the expense of women, homosexuals, and alcoholics funny either, but they aren't my personal crusade I suppose. Women, homosexuals, and to a lesser extent, alcoholics, can generally fend for themselves.

3OH!3-I suppose maybe I should calibrate my annoyance and offense at things to the caliber of the source, but I'm too touchy for that. The song Don't Trust Me certainly shouldn't rank up there with Congressman Jeff Sessions saying that students with disabilities should be segregated and punished harshly, but it irks me nonetheless.
Aside from the inspiring chorus of "never trust a ho", here are some more choice lyrics: "Shush, girl! Shut your lips! Do the Helen Keller and talk with your hips". Hmm, an icon of hope and inspiration for generations of people with disabilities and their families is reduced to a reference for using body language to express your sexual urges. Hmm, I wonder how many people who've heard this song don't know who Helen Keller is?

Article- I forget the article, but I might as well mention it. It's been a few years, but (as you can tell) it's stayed in my mind since. The United States was referred to as Canada's neighbor or sibling with Asperger's Syndrome. I guess that's supposed to mean we are socially awkward/ignorant. Not really sure. Maybe it meant that we have sensory issues and really hate those tags in our undies and t-shirts. Hmm...


  1. A congressman actually said that? That is insane. Is he still in office? I hope not.

  2. This link is to an overview of his proposed changes to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, but it doesn't have the direct quote that I was referencing:

    It's been so many years since it happened and since I read it, but it still pisses me off! And yes, he is still in the Senate.

  3. Oh, just wanted to add, Sessions didn't come out and say segregate the kids with disabilities. He just wants the ones that cause disruptions to be removed from classes so they don't interrupt the learning of the typical kids. That'd be, oh, what? About 100% of children with special needs? (we should also remove anything shiny, that makes noise, is colorful, or interesting; those things might distract the kids as well...)